Eubank denies need for safety changes after Blackwell fight


Chris Eubank Jr does not believe stricter safety rules need to be introduced in boxing after Nick Blackwell was placed into an induced coma following their fight on Saturday.

Blackwell was stopped on medical advice in the 10th round having sustained a series of heavy blows from Eubank Jr, who subsequently won the British middleweight title.

The 25-year-old collapsed in the ring after the result was announced and was rushed to hospital from Wembley Arena having suffered bleeding on the brain.

Eubank Jr is confident fighters receive sufficient protection and insisted he never had the intention of causing such damage.

"I don't believe there needs to be any changes. All the fighters are looked after medically," he said.

"It's just up to the referee and their teams to be responsible with their fighters. That's the thing and every referee has their own opinion.

"When I heard the news, it was tough to hear. No fighter goes in there to cause that type of damage to an opponent. There's nothing personal.

"It was upsetting and the first thing I had when I heard was to say on Twitter that he is a true warrior and to wish him a speedy recovery. You play rugby, football and cricket, but you don't play boxing."

Eubank Jr followed advice from his father, former WBO middleweight and super-middleweight champion Chris Eubank, not to target Blackwell's head and eased off in the latter stages of the bout.

"I have tunnel vision when I'm in there and my dad could see he had nothing left and so he said 'body'," Eubank Jr added. "I'm glad the doctor stopped the fight because the referee wasn't going to.

"I wasn't throwing as many punches. In the last round I stopped my onslaught. I thought this guy is hurt so I took it down a notch."

Eubank Sr admitted to concerns over Blackwell's wellbeing during the fight, but refuted suggestions he had saved the 25-year-old's life.

"Even in sparring, I tell Junior to stay away from the head because his punching is fast, powerful and dangerous," Eubank said. "So most certainly I was saying this to protect the fighter. He had the fight won.

"Maybe I'm being flippant, but I only worry about his opponents. I can see the distance in ability between him and his opponents, but nobody will listen to me.

"No, I would not say that [I saved Blackwell's life]. That's a conclusion I can't draw. What happened on Saturday night was not the exception. It's a rule for me. I've always been this way because I've been in there. I've tasted the bitter beatings."